Facing a drunk driving charge in Pennsylvania means that you are facing possible time in jail, a driver’s license suspension, fines and other penalties. You need to make sure that you understand exactly what you might have as a sentence when you are preparing your defense.

The exact sentence you might face depends on the circumstances of your case. The first time you have a drunk driving case, you will face penalties that aren’t as harsh as subsequent cases.

For example, on a first-time case, you don’t have to deal with a mandatory minimum license suspension period. On a second and third conviction, you face a mandatory minimum period of one year for a license suspension. As you can imagine, having a suspended license can cause a lot of problems in your life. This can make it difficult to get to work or run errands when you need to.

Another factor that you have to think about is that you might have to have an ignition interlock installed on vehicles you drive. When this happens, there is a notation made on your driver’s license so officers who stop you can make sure you are only driving a vehicle with the device. These devices are costly, as are the fees for monitoring the testing.

As you are thinking about your defense, make sure that you take the penalties possible in your case into account. You also have to think about the case against you. Together, these points can help you determine how you are going to move forward with your defense.

Source: FindLaw, “Pennsylvania DUI Laws,” accessed March 21, 2018